13. I’ve got a (half dozen) golden ticket(s)…

Sometimes, I have to sit down, take a deep breath, and realise how ridiculous my life is.

I arrived in Salvador, Brazil, alone and without a friend, exactly seven days ago. I had a place to stay for ten days, a rough grasp of the Portuguese language, and zero tickets for the forthcoming FIFA 2014 Football World Cup.

I just got home from a night out drinking with new friends, (one of whom, a half-Scot, half-Spaniard with a love of football to rival mine, and a passion for footie jerseys likewise that makes him almost certainly a friend for life), and jumped online before getting a good night’s dribbling.


Real life World Cup tickets in my real life hand…

And FIFA chose just that moment to release tickets for the two matches I didn’t yet have tickets for, and the thousands of people around the world trying to buy them must have all sneezed at the same time, because I got them both.

I now have, in my possession, either physically or digitally, tickets for all six matches here, and all it took was seven days.


So excited to collect my tickets, I vibrated until I blurred…

(And a bunch of money, time, energy and luck. Not to mention meeting dozens of people from all over the world, on the streets of Salvador and in the chat rooms of the internet).

The morning began well, when a friend of a Brazilian guy I had met online whilst staying up all night for tickets picked me up and drove me to collect my tickets at the largest, most impressive mall in Salvador.

Unfortunately, the FIFA ticket collection centre was set up in a corner of the car-park.


FIFA obviously aren’t making enough money to have nice ticket centres…

Still, after a moment of panic when my passport didn’t bring up my details, the friendly staff eventually printed the tickets off for me, and now the day ends with my mission more or less accomplished.

Now, all I have to do is get to the games, watch them, and tell you all about them…


Even Fureco seemed pleased for me…NO! DON’T EAT MY TICKETS FURECO! THAT’S A BAD FURECO!!!…



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